August 12, 2019 – Legal marijuana is now a near $10 billion business in the U.S., which means it is only natural that recruiting firms will begin focusing on bringing talent to this booming sector. Providence, RI-headquartered Standish Executive Search recently opened a new office in Worcester, MA, and has started working with the growing cannabis industry to find senior leaders. Principals of the firm, Stanley Davis and Kelley Small, lead the Worcester office.
Standish Executive Search said its niche is working with small-to-medium-sized businesses positioned for growth, change or succession. “Advanced and sophisticated companies in Massachusetts are a burgeoning factor in the state’s economy,” said Mr. Davis. “Working with them to identify, attract and guarantee the success of their right new leaders is a core competency of the Standish team.”
Mr. Davis brings organization building and business transformation experience, while Ms. Small a former long-time Worcester area resident, business owner and advisor, brings the knowledge of the Worcester market.
Standish Executive Search’s committed presence in Worcester complements the firm’s offices in Providence, RI and Manchester, NH. “While today’s technology allows us to communicate with businesses located anywhere, we find nothing compares with the ability to be a short drive away from our clients’ locations and to meet with them face-to-face,” said Ms. Small.
Since recreational marijuana retailers opened in November, $239 million worth of cannabis products have been sold in Massachusetts at the 22 retailers authorized to begin sales. According to the state Cannabis Control Commission, 164 other retailer applications have been submitted.
Standish Executive Search was established in 2012 by Mr. Davis. The firm’s clients are primarily family-owned and privately held businesses engaged in the manufacturing, B2B services and not-for-profit sectors. Mr. Davis is recognized as a leader in organization building and business transformations. He formerly served as chief human resources officer for the American National Red Cross in Washington, D.C.
“Our focus is on mid-sized and small companies that have never hired a search firm,” said Ms. Small. “They need guidance that moves beyond the search. We work with each client to help determine their needs based on where they want to go, not where they currently are. Our clients, who represent many different industries throughout the state, have been pleasantly surprised with the quality of candidates that we bring to their door.”
With marijuana becoming legal in an increasing number of states, the expanding sector faces a strong need for talent. This has led to a number of search firms growing in this area and handful of new search firms opening to focus on this industry. Here is a look from the Hunt Scanlon Media archives:
New York City-based ForceBrands, a specialized recruiting firm for the consumer products industry, launched a cannabis-focused division called HerbForce. The new offering will include executive search services, board director assembly and a digital job board. “With the cannabis sector estimated to reach $146.4 billion by 2025, we are thrilled to be at the forefront of such an exciting time of growth.”
H2 Talent in Boulder, CO, is the latest recruiting entrant to serve cannabis companies looking for senior talent. The search firm was launched specifically to provide C-suite and executive recruiting services to the cannabis industry. It is co-founded by John Comeau of recruiting firm C-Level Search, and Jay Czarkowski and Michelle Whitmore, both of management consulting firm Canna Advisors.
Protis Global added Wall Street veteran Samantha Ford to its executive search and advisory firm as senior vice president of business development to head a third location which will be in the Bay Area and entirely focused on recruitment within the cannabis industry. Ms. Ford has over 20 years of established relationships from Wall Street, and from key growth sectors nationally.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media